Study finds that quitting smoking during pregnancy lowers risk of preterm births

A new study of more than 25 million pregnant women reports on rates of smoking cessation at the start of and during pregnancy and also examines the association of quitting cigarette smoking and the risk of preterm birth.
Teen Health News — ScienceDaily

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Study: Opioid dose variability may be a risk factor for opioid overdose

DENVER Patients prescribed opioid pain medications whose doses varied over time were 3 times more likely to experience an overdose than patients prescribed stable opioid doses, according to an observational study from Kaiser Permanente published today in JAMA Network Open. The study also showed that patients who discontinued long-term opioid therapy for 3 or more months had half the risk of opioid overdose.

“Our study suggests that safely managing long-term opioid therapy is complex,” said Ingrid Binswanger, MD, senior investigator at Kaiser Permanente Institute for Health Research in Colorado and co-author of the study.

Ingrid Binswanger, MD
Ingrid Binswanger, MD

“This study suggests going up and down on opioid doses — also called dose variability — could present an increased risk of overdose,” Dr. Binswanger said. “Through this study, we also found eventually discontinuing opioid therapy may prevent overdoses. With continued studies, we hope to find out how care providers can help patients with their pain without putting them at unnecessary risk due to rapid changes in their dose.”

The 12-year study included more than 14,000 Kaiser Permanente members in Colorado who were prescribed long-term opioids. Researchers used electronic health records to track the history of patients to see if they had dose changes and overdoses from opioid pain medications and other opioid drugs.

The research team obtained a follow-up $ 2 million, 4-year grant from the National Institutes for Health. The study will look at how patients and doctors manage changes in opioid doses, including any long-term risks and benefits of discontinuing opioid pain medications.

Jason Glanz, PhD
Jason Glanz, PhD

“Kaiser Permanente, like many health care organizations across the country, has made significant changes to safely reduce opioid prescriptions for our members,” said Jason Glanz, PhD, senior investigator at the Institute for Health Research and co-author on the study.

“This study represents the first of many investigations that we plan to do on the topic,” Dr. Glanz said. “Our goal is to help identify the most safe and effective approaches for managing long-term opioid therapy. We want to be able to minimize patients’ pain and reduce their risk for overdose.”

This study was funded by the National Institute on Drug Abuse and conducted by researchers at Kaiser Permanente’s Institute for Health Research.

Additional study authors include Susan Shetterly, MS; Komal J. Narwaney, MPH, PhD; and Stan Xu, PhD.


About Kaiser Permanente
Kaiser Permanente is committed to helping shape the future of health care. We are recognized as one of America’s leading health care providers and not-for-profit health plans. Founded in 1945, Kaiser Permanente has a mission to provide high-quality, affordable health care services and to improve the health of our members and the communities we serve. We currently serve more than 12.4 million members in 8 states and the District of Columbia. Care for members and patients is focused on their total health and guided by their personal Permanente Medical Group physicians, specialists and team of caregivers. Our expert and caring medical teams are empowered and supported by industry-leading technology advances and tools for health promotion, disease prevention, state-of-the-art care delivery and world-class chronic disease management. Kaiser Permanente is dedicated to care innovations, clinical research, health education and the support of community health.

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Study: Cannabis Can Reverse the Aging Process in the Brain

Just in case you need another reason to smoke a joint, a study reveals that cannabis may actually reverse the aging process in the human brain.

In the study, which was led by researchers at the University of Bonn in Germany and published in the journal Natural Medicine, scientists found that cannabis helped older mice retain certain cognitive abilities that usually digress with age.

According to the study, older mice were given a small amount of THC, the main active ingredient in cannabis, over a period of four weeks. In turn, the mice regressed to the mental state of a two-month-old mouse. On the other hand, younger mice who were exposed to THC performed slightly worse on tests that measured their memory, behavior, and ability to learn.

“[The] results reveal a profound, long-lasting improvement of cognitive performance resulting from a low dose of THC treatment in mature and old animals,” the study reports.

Andras Bilkei-Gorzo, a neuroscientist who participated in conducting the study, told Voice of America that they were bedazzled by their findings. “The treatment made the young brain old and the old brain young. So, that was something that was above our imagination,” Bilkei-Gorzo said, as reported by voanews.com.

This scientific discovery could help researchers find ways to slow down or even reverse the cognitive aging process of humans. It may also lead to a medical breakthrough when it comes to treating age-related diseases like dementia.

“Cannabis preparations and THC are used for medicinal purposes,” the study reports. “They have an excellent safety record and do not produce adverse side-effects when administered at a low dose to older individuals. Thus, chronic, low-dose treatment with THC or cannabis extracts could be a potential strategy to slow down or even to reverse cognitive decline in the elderly.”

 


Editor’s note: This article originally published May 11, 2017.

The post Study: Cannabis Can Reverse the Aging Process in the Brain appeared first on Black Enterprise.

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This new study revealed something incredibly gross about beards

This new study revealed something incredibly gross about beards


This new study revealed something incredibly gross about beards

We’re all for people rocking their facial hair however they like (because you do you, guys). But a new study just revealed something very interesting about beards…and admittedly pretty gross, too. Apparently, there’s more bacteria in a man’s beard than on a dog’s fur. Yep.

Researchers at the Hirslanden Clinic in Switzerland studied samples from the beards of 18 men and the fur of 30 dogs, and their findings were published in European Radiology, a peer-reviewed journal, in February. They determined that even though most pups enjoy rolling around in the grass and mud, there’s a “significantly higher bacterial load in specimens taken from men’s beards” than in dog fur.

Though 23 of the 30 dogs had “high microbial counts” on their fur, all 18 of the men did in their beards, too. According to USA Today, the full study showed that disease-causing bacteria (like the kinds that cause urinary tract infections) were also found more frequently in beards than on our four-legged friends.

The researchers took their samples from the pups’ necks, an area which vets call “particularly unhygienic” due to canine skin infections, and found that “the beards of men harbor significantly more microbes than the neck fur of dogs and these microbes were significantly more pathogenic to humans.” Basically, men’s beards are harboring more grossness than our doggo’s fur.

Even though the sample size is admittedly small, we’ve gotta say: We’re a little skeeved out. Sorry, guys. (And maybe now’s the time to invest in some beard shampoo?)

The post This new study revealed something incredibly gross about beards appeared first on HelloGiggles.

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Yale study revives cellular activity in pig brains hours after death

Yale University scientists have succeeded in restoring basic cellular activity in pigs’ brains hours after their deaths in a finding that may one day lead to advances in treating human stroke and brain injuries, researchers reported on Wednesday.


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Major study finds one in five children have mental health problems

One in five Ontario children and youth suffer from a mental disorder, but less than one-third have had contact with a mental health care provider. A new study included 10,802 children and youth aged four to 17 in 6,537 families. It replicated and expanded on the landmark 1983 Ontario Child Health Study of 3,290 children in 1,869 families.
Child Development News — ScienceDaily

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Oh, brother! NASA twins study shows how space changes the human body

An American astronaut experienced multiple biological changes in space but returned to normal – with some exceptions – after coming back to Earth, according to a study involving twin brothers that shed light on how space flight affects the human body. 


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Men’s beards carry more harmful germs than dog fur: study

Who let the beards out? Woof! A new study which sampled men’s beards found more harmful bacteria in human whiskers than in dog fur. “The researchers found a significantly higher bacterial load in specimens taken from the men’s beards compared with the dogs’ fur,” says professor Andreas Gutzeit of Switzerland’s Hirslanden Clinic. The study actually…
Living | New York Post

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Autism rate rises 43 percent in New Jersey, study finds

A new report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which uses research by Rutgers University, shows a significant increase in the percentage of 4-year-old children with autism spectrum disorder in New Jersey. The study found the rate increased 43 percent from 2010 to 2014 in the state.
Child Development News — ScienceDaily

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Human health can be ‘mostly sustained’ for a year in space, NASA Twins Study concludes

Spending 340 days aboard the International Space Station between 2015 and 2016 caused changes in astronaut Scott Kelly’s body, from his weight down to his genes, according to the results of the NASA Twins Study, released Thursday.


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Are Baseball Umpires Wrong As Often As Fans Think They Are? Yes, One Study Says

Baseball is back, and fans can anticipate another season of amazing catches, overpowering pitching, tape-measure home runs – and, yes, controversial calls that lead to blow-ups between umpires and players.

Home plate umpires are at the heart of baseball; every single pitch can require a judgment call. Yet ask any fan or player, and they’ll tell you that many of these calls are incorrect – errors that can affect strategy, statistics and even game outcomes.

Just how many mistakes are made?

Comprehensive umpire performance statistics are not readily known, tracked or made available. Major League Baseball doesn’t seem interested in sharing the historical data.

Could it be because the numbers aren’t flattering?

Luckily, every MLB pitch is tracked and made available – numbers then have to be accessed, downloaded, sorted and evaluated. This takes time and computing power. In a new study with support from a team of Boston University graduate students, we closely analyzed how many balls get called strikes and vice versa. The accuracy of all home plate umpires was ranked and age and experience taken into account.

While the human element of the game certainly adds color, our results show that it comes at a high cost: far too many mistakes.

Mining the data

All 30 Major League Baseball stadiums are outfitted with triangulated tracking cameras that follow baseballs from the pitcher’s hand until it crosses home plate. Ball location can be tracked up to 50 times during each pitch, and accuracy is said to have a margin of error of 1 inch. This information is used to evaluate players, but MLB doesn’t share the results in a way that allows fans to easily evaluate the performance of umpires.

We analyzed nearly 4 million pitches over the course of the last 11 regular seasons. This data, which had been collected by MLB-owned Statcast and Pitch f/x, was sorted, formatted and superimposed on a standard strike zone map.

Using this available technology, we measured ball and strike calls for accuracy. We then ranked the error rates for each active umpire, creating a “Bad Call Ratio.” The higher the ratio, the worse the umpire.

The findings were troubling.

Botched calls and high error rates are rampant. MLB home plate umpires make incorrect calls at least 20% of the time – one in every five calls. In the 2018 season, MLB umpires made 34,246 incorrect ball and strike calls for an average of 14 per game, or 1.6 per inning. Last season, 55 games – 2.2% of the total played – ended with an incorrect call.

When batters had two strikes, the error rate for all umpires increased – incorrect calls happen 29% of the time, almost double the error rate when the batter had one or no strikes.

We also found that the highest error rates did not come from younger, less experienced umpires; they came from the older, veteran umpires. The average MLB umpire is 46 years old, with 13 years of experience. But the top performers between 2008 and 2018 had an average age of 33 years old and had less than three years of experience at the big league level. Like professional baseball players, professional umpires seem to peak at a certain age.

Despite years of data-driven evidence, MLB has notoriously resisted retiring poorly performing umpires and hiring better-performing ones. The league remains top heavy with aging umpires, making it difficult for fresh new talent to make impact.

Umpires can still play a role

For all of the ways MLB has incorporated technology into the game – the radar gun, instant replay, pitch graphics, Doppler radar – the league has resisted deploying this technology to assist with calling balls and strikes.

Umpires continue to call balls and strikes like they did a century ago when Babe Ruth played.

I’m not proposing that baseball bring in robots and fire the umpires; baseball has too many one-off situations and complexities to assume a bot could replace an umpire. But MLB does have a unique opportunity to use existing technology and strengthen human-software collaboration so umpires can do a better job.

Umpires could easily be fitted with ear pieces connecting them to a control center that conveys real-time ball and strike information. These tech-assisted umpires could then make calls correctly, quickly and effortlessly. Time-honored and much beloved behind-the-plate signs, signals and sounds would still exist. And umpires could remain the final arbiter, having override ability under certain circumstances, such as if a ball hits the ground before crossing the plate or if a system outage occurs.

Strong recruiting, hiring and retention of superior performing umpires coupled with tech aids would reduce error rates and also help dampen biased pitch calling. Strike zone subjectivity would be minimized, allowing batters and pitchers to focus more on their craft and less on guessing a specific umpire’s strike zone quirks. It would also reduce conflict between teams and umpires. And imagine how much the player and fan experience would improve if more than 34,000 annual incorrect calls vanished.

This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article here.

Sports – TIME

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Abortions Rise Worldwide When US Cuts Funding To Women’s Health Clinics, Study Finds

Advancing Republican efforts to reduce access to abortion, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced on March 26 that the Trump administration will further restrict federal funding to health providers abroad that perform, promote or even talk about abortions.

The move expands the “global gag rule” Trump imposed in 2017. It substantially expands the number of groups affected by cutting funding to any organization with a foreign partner that provides abortions – even if those overseas groups are not, themselves, U.S. government-funded.

First implemented under Ronald Reagan in 1984, the global gag rule has been rescinded by every Democrat and reinstated by every Republican to occupy the Oval Office, reflecting the partisan nature of abortion.

Supporters of the global gag rule say defunding abortion providers will reduce abortions. However, researchers from Stanford University in 2011 found that this U.S. policy actually made women in sub-Saharan Africa twice as likely to have an abortion.

Gag rule increases abortions in Latin America and Africa

My recent study, published in November 2018, confirms those findings in Africa and shows that the global gag rule had an even greater effect in Latin America.

Analyzing abortion data from 51 developing countries between 2001 and 2008 – which encompassed the reproductive decisions of about 6.3 million women – I found that women in Latin America were three times more likely to have an abortion while the global gag rule was in effect.

Reflecting this impact, the percentage of pregnancies in Latin America that ended in abortion rose from 23 percent in 1994, under the Clinton administration, to 32 percent by 2010, after two terms of the Bush administration.

In the United States, where abortion is legal nationwide, about 18 to 23 percent of pregnancies end in abortion.

How a US law hurts women abroad

Funding cuts under the global gag rule cause health care staff reductions, clinic closures and contraceptive shortages. Without family planning counseling and birth control, there are more unintended pregnancies – and, consequently, more abortions.

Numerous studies confirm that making abortions harder to get doesn’t stop them from happening. It just makes them less safe, because the procedure is not necessarily performed in sterile facilities by qualified doctors.

Latin America, a heavily Catholic region, has the world’s most restrictive abortion laws. Six countries, including Honduras, Nicaragua and El Salvador, completely ban abortion. Others permit it only in extreme cases like rape, incest or maternal health.

Latin America also has the world’s highest rate of illicit abortions, according to a 2017 studyin The Lancet. Seventy-five percent of all abortions in Latin America are performed illegally.

Since Trump reinstated the global gag rule in 2017, health workers in developing countrieshave reported drastic reductions in the availability of contraception, teen sex education and family planning services.

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Expectant mothers can prevent fetal brain problems caused by the flu, study shows

Choline, an essential B vitamin nutrient, can prevent fetal brain developmental problems that often occur after prenatal maternal infections such as colds and influenza (flu), according to a new study.
Infant and Preschool Learning News — ScienceDaily

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Some children can ‘recover’ from autism, but problems often remain, study finds

Research in the past several years has shown that children can outgrow a diagnosis of autism spectrum disorder (ASD), once considered a lifelong condition. In a new study, researchers have found that the vast majority of such children still have difficulties that require therapeutic and educational support.
Child Development News — ScienceDaily

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Adolescents are more likely than adults to use fruit- and candy-flavored e-cigarettes, study finds

As the FDA looks for more information on e-cigarettes and e-juice flavors, a new study shows that adolescents and young adults cite appealing flavors as a main reason for using e-cigarettes, that they are more likely to turn to fruit- and candy-flavored cigarettes than adult smokers trying to quit who more commonly prefer tobacco flavors, and that the younger population are likely to use multiple e-cigarette flavors at the same time.
Teen Health News — ScienceDaily

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Smoking during pregnancy doubles the risk of sudden unexpected infant death, study warns

Scientists are providing expecting mothers new information about how smoking before and during pregnancy contributes to the risk of an infant dying suddenly and unexpectedly before their first birthday.
Teen Health News — ScienceDaily

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Study discovers victims are often blamed for workplace bullying

Office space is not necessarily safe space. Victims of workplace abuse are often mislabeled as bullies themselves, and may even be stigmatized by supervisors as lousy employees despite stellar job performance, according to new research published in the Journal of Applied Psychology. Bullies, meanwhile, are frequently given a pass because bosses play favorites, says study…
Living | New York Post

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Anna Paquin & Patrick Fugit Had To Study On Set Of ‘Almost Famous’ | PeopleTV

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Low-carb diets linked to heart rhythm issues, study says

Cardiologists have new beef with low-carb diets. Carb-crunching weight loss trends like keto, paleo and the old-school Atkin’s diet are linked to a higher chance of developing atrial fibrillation, according to new research to presented March 16-18 at the American College of Cardiology‘s 68th annual Scientific Session. The hearts and diets of 14,000 people were…
Living | New York Post

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MMR vaccine does not cause autism, another study confirms

The measles, mumps, and rubella vaccine does not increase the risk of autism and does not trigger autism in children who are at risk, according to a new study of over 650,000 children.


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Study affirms self-reported sleep duration as a useful health measure in children

While sleep questionnaires are commonly completed by children and their parents, there has been a lack of data comparing the validity of these self-reported sleep parameters. A new study indicates that these sleep characteristics are relatively accurate compared to one another, and they vary only slightly from objective sleep measures.
Parenting News — ScienceDaily

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Bag Over Bae: Study Says Consumers Favor Money Over Love

Valentine’s Day, depending on who you ask, is a day filled with Instagramable moments of bae goals, or a time to totally go the anti-beau route and focus on self-love. You can’t get through February 14th without seeing an oversaturation of all things related to love.

However, a recent Merill Edge report reflects that for many people, money trumps love with 56% preferring a partner who provides financial security over grandiose love (44%). Respondents also favor a partner who is career-focused (63%) over socially conscious (37%), frugal (55%) over philanthropic (45%), and a saver (83%) over a big spender (17%).

“Americans are saving money at record rates, and yet we’re seeing people of all ages look to their current and prospective partners to secure their financial futures. Economic uncertainty and a lack of financial planning seem to be creating this burgeoning trend of dependence on others for financial security,” Aron Levine, head of Consumer Banking & Merrill Edge, said in a statement. “We believe that it’s crucial to have a financial plan at every life stage in order to achieve financial goals and stay on the right path to financial success.”

Though many are attracted to a go-getter who is all about getting that coin, things can get a little sticky when it comes to the oh-so-inevitable “money talk” with bae. The report found the majority of respondents admitted they “rarely talk about their debt (60%),” salary (57%), and investments (55%) with their partner.

Respondents in the study also ranked almost all major relationship milestones ahead of discussing their finances, including meeting the family, being intimate, traveling together, and discussing politics.

According to Merrill Edge, the nationwide survey is delivered semi‑annually and “takes an in‑depth look at the financial concerns and priorities of “mass affluent Americans—U.S. households with investable assets ranging from $ 50,000 to $ 250,000.” Respondents in the study included those aged 18-40 (Gen Z and millennials) with investable assets between $ 50,000 and $ 250,000 or aged 18-40 who have investable assets between $ 20,000 and $ 50,000 with an annual income of at least $ 50,000.

If money is a major factor in a choosing a love or spouse, experts recommend getting over the awkward silence and procrastination and asking key questions about debt, money morality, and financial plans for the future—including retirement—early. Having open and honest conversations about money with someone of serious romantic interest—especially as millennial households are earning more money at their age than generations before—can help those in the dating pool avoid a lot of heartbreak and relationship woes down the road.

Merrill Edge Report: Fall 2018 infographic

 

The post Bag Over Bae: Study Says Consumers Favor Money Over Love appeared first on Black Enterprise.

Money | Black Enterprise

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Shop select Free People sale and clearance items at Bloomingdales.com!

Breakfast might not be that important after all, study says

is breakfast good for you

We’ve long been told that breakfast is “the most important meal of the day.” It’s said that eating a meal in the morning can give your metabolism a bit of a boost and possibly prevent overeating later in the day. This may be beneficial if you’re hoping to maintain or lose weight, or so breakfast proponents would have us believe.

As it turns out, a regular breakfast might not be all that great for people trying to slim down. A new research paper published in the British Medical Journal reviewed over a dozen different studies on breakfast habits in order to paint a more detailed picture of how early meals affect weight, and the data doesn’t look particularly good for breakfast lovers.

Continue reading…

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Breakfast might not be that important after all, study says originally appeared on BGR.com on Tue, 5 Feb 2019 at 23:07:26 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.


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Advocating for social issues at work more likely to succeed linking morality and mission, study says

When convincing management to consider advocating for a particular social issue, employees may think it is wise to focus on the benefits to the bottom line but making a moral argument may be a better strategy, as long as it aligns with the company’s values, according to research.
Consumer Behavior News — ScienceDaily

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Persistent low body weight in young kids increases risk for anorexia nervosa later, study finds

A new study has found that a persistent low body mass index (BMI) in children, starting as young as age 2 for boys and 4 for girls, may be a risk factor for the development of anorexia nervosa in adolescence.
Child Development News — ScienceDaily

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Nearly half of US adults have cardiovascular disease, study says

Nearly half of all adults in the United States have some type of cardiovascular disease, according to the American Heart Association, defining the condition as coronary heart disease, heart failure, stroke or high blood pressure.


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A woman’s inner circle is how she gets ahead, study says

TwitterFacebook

The female-only networks that women use to share job openings, pass on interview tips, or even just complain about that time their boss interrupted them in a meeting are integral to their success.

That’s what new research published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences from the University of Notre Dame and Northwestern says, proving that yes, that female-only group email chain is, in fact, vitally important.

Researchers studied social networks and their role in job placement by looking at email messages sent by over 700 graduates of a U.S. business school who were placed in varying levels of leadership positions. According to the Notre Dame press site, the researchers then compared the networks’ size or “centrality,” gender composition, and connection strength. Read more…

More about Business, Careers, Networking, Feminism, and Social Good


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Handguns are more popular in US homes, with deadly consequences for children, study says

Fewer Americans are likely to own a gun now than 40 years ago, but those who do are more likely to own handguns over rifles or shotguns. As the proportion of those with handguns has increased, so has the number of children under the age of 5 who are dying from firearm injuries, according to a new study.


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U.S. youth suicides more prevalent in states with higher gun ownership, study finds

A new study finds that states with higher levels of household gun ownership also have higher overall youth suicide rates, with every 10 percentage-point increase in household gun ownership associated with a 26.9 percent increase in the youth suicide rate.
Teen Health News — ScienceDaily

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A study analyzes the impact of targeted Facebook advertising on the election

Research has studied the effectiveness of micro-targeted political advertising on social media such as Facebook in the United States. The research concludes that it may have increased the number of Donald Trump voters by ten per cent in the 2016 presidential elections.
Consumer Behavior News — ScienceDaily

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Controlling children’s behavior with screen time leads to more screen time, study reveals

Researchers investigated the impact of parenting practices on the amount of time young children spend in front of screens. They found a majority of parents use screen time to control behavior, especially on weekends. This results in children spending an average of 20 minutes more a day on weekends in front of a screen. Researchers say this is likely because using it as a reward or punishment heightens a child’s attraction to the activity.
Child Development News — ScienceDaily

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Today in Movie Culture: ‘Glass’ Character Study, Rob Marshall Discusses ‘Mary Poppins Returns’ VFX and More

Today in Movie Culture: ‘Glass’ Character Study, Rob Marshall Discusses ‘Mary Poppins Returns’ VFX and More

Character Analysis of the Day

With tickets for M. Night Shyamalan’s Glass now on sale, let’s get reacquainted with Kevin Wendell Crumb, a.k.a. The Horde, and his many personalities, including The Beast. In this video essay, Shane Bertram discusses the psychology of the supervillain character as seen in Split:

 

Easter Eggs of the Day

Escape Room, the first hit movie of 2019, is filled with clues to solving its clever set-piece puzzles. Zac Morris highlights…

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More kids and teens are dying from opioids in the last 20 years, study says

The death rate has tripled among these groups.
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http://www.acrx.org -As millions of Americans strive to deal with the economic downturn,loss of jobs,foreclosures,high cost of gas,and the rising cost of prescription drug cost. Charles Myrick ,the President of American Consultants Rx, announced the re-release of the American Consultants Rx community service project which consist of millions of free discount prescription cards being donated to thousands of not for profits,hospitals,schools,churches,etc. in an effort to assist the uninsured,under insured,and seniors deal with the high cost of prescription drugs.-American Consultants Rx -Pharmacy Discount Network News

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How US children and teens die: Study reveals the widespread and persistent role of firearms

America lost 20,360 children and teens in 2016 — 60 percent of them to preventable injuries, a new study shows. But while death rates from the top cause — motor vehicle crashes — have declined steadily since 1999, rates from the second-leading cause — firearms — have gone up. It’s the first time all causes of child and adolescent death have been tallied by both mechanism and intent.
Teen Health News — ScienceDaily

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Cost to walk away from Facebook for a year? More than $1,000, new study finds

Using a series of auctions in which people were paid to close their accounts for as little as one day or as long as one year, a new study finds that Facebook users would require an average of more than $ 1,000 to deactivate their account for one year.
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Opioids are killing more children and teens, too, study says

A growing number of children and adolescents in the United States are dying from opioid poisonings, a new study shows.


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How marijuana may damage teenage brains in study using genetically vulnerable mice

In a study of adolescent mice with a version of a gene linked to serious human mental illnesses, researchers say they have uncovered a possible explanation for how marijuana may damage the brains of some human teens.
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Kaiser Permanente JAMA Study Finds 10-Year Follow-up Interval After Negative Colonoscopies Is Associated with Reduced Risk of Colorectal Cancer and Mortality

OAKLAND, Calif. — Ten years after a negative colonoscopy, Kaiser Permanente members had 46 percent lower risk of being diagnosed with and were 88 percent less likely to die from colorectal cancer compared with those who did not undergo colorectal cancer screening, according to a study published today in JAMA Internal Medicine.

“Our study shows that following a colonoscopy with normal findings, there is a reduced risk of developing and dying from colorectal cancer for at least 10 years,” said study leader Jeffrey Lee, MD, Kaiser Permanente gastroenterologist and research scientist at the Division of Research.

“These findings suggest that physicians can feel confident following the guideline-recommended 10-year rescreening interval after a negative colonoscopy in which no colorectal cancer or polyps were found. There is now solid evidence supporting that recommendation.”

The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force currently recommends colorectal cancer screening for adults at average risk between 50 and 75 years old, with either colonoscopy every 10 years, sigmoidoscopy every five years or fecal testing every year, assuming these tests are normal.

Before this study, there was little evidence supporting the 10-year recommended screening interval after a colonoscopy with normal findings, Lee said. “That uncertainty was concerning because colorectal cancer is the second leading cause of cancer-related deaths in the United States.”

To help address the evidence gap for when to rescreen, the retrospective study examined the long-term risk of colorectal cancer and related deaths after a negative colonoscopy in comparison to no screening in more than 1.25 million average-risk members of Kaiser Permanente in Northern California who were of recommended screening age during the 1998 to 2015 study period.

“This large study is the first with a high enough number of average-risk individuals to evaluate cancer risks after colonoscopy examinations, compared with no screening,” said senior author Douglas Corley, MD, PhD, Kaiser Permanente gastroenterologist and research scientist with the Division of Research. “Such information provides greater certainty regarding the appropriate timing for rescreening after a negative colonoscopy.”

Colorectal cancer is an active area of study at Kaiser Permanente.

The National Cancer Institute funded the study through its Population-Based Research Optimizing Screening Through Personalized Regimens consortium.

In addition to Lee and Corley, co-authors were Christopher D. Jensen, PhD, Theodore R. Levin, MD, Natalia Udaltsova, PhD, Wei K. Zhao, MPH, Bruce H. Fireman, MA, and Charles P. Quesenberry, PhD, all of the Kaiser Permanente Division of Research; Ann G. Zauber, PhD, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center; Joanne E. Schottinger, MD, and Virginia P. Quinn, PhD, Kaiser Permanente Southern California Department of Research and Evaluation; and Chyke A. Doubeni, MD, University of Pennsylvania.


About the Kaiser Permanente Division of Research
The Kaiser Permanente Division of Research conducts, publishes, and disseminates epidemiologic and health services research to improve the health and medical care of Kaiser Permanente members and society at large. It seeks to understand the determinants of illness and well-being, and to improve the quality and cost-effectiveness of health care. Currently, DOR’s 600-plus staff is working on more than 400 epidemiological and health services research projects. For more information, visit www.dor.kaiser.org or follow us @KPDOR.

About Kaiser Permanente
Kaiser Permanente is committed to helping shape the future of health care. We are recognized as one of America’s leading health care providers and not-for-profit health plans. Founded in 1945, Kaiser Permanente has a mission is to provide high-quality, affordable health care services and to improve the health of our members and the communities we serve. We currently serve more than 12.3 million members in eight states and the District of Columbia. Care for members and patients is focused on their total health and guided by their personal Permanente Medical Group physicians, specialists and team of caregivers. Our expert and caring medical teams are empowered and supported by industry-leading technology advances and tools for health promotion, disease prevention, state-of-the-art care delivery and world-class chronic disease management. Kaiser Permanente is dedicated to care innovations, clinical research, health education and the support of community health. For more information, go to share.kaiserpermanente.org.

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UK Will Have To Pay Heavy Price For Brexit: IMF Study

The International Monetary Fund warned that if Britain leaves the European Union, the country will have to pay a heavy economic price for it, and those costs would be unevenly spread across different sectors and regions.

A Country Report on the United Kingdom by the IMF European Dept., cited in an IMF blog, has measured the potential volume of loss the country will incur in various sectors.

The British parliament is hotly debating Prime Minister Theresa May’s withdrawal agreement after t
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Cuba ‘acoustic attack’ mystery continues as study offers more details on US diplomats’ symptoms

It started with a phone call that Dr. Michael Hoffer said he had never received before in his career — not even after serving 21 years in the military.


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Movies Starring Women Earn More Than Male-Led Films, Study Finds

The research, covering 2014 to 2017, also showed the power of films that pass the Bechdel test, in which two female characters discuss something other than a man.
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New study finds bias against women and girls when intellectual ability is sought

A new study finds bias against both women and girls for jobs or activities requiring intellectual ability. The research underscores the pervasiveness of gender bias, held even among females, in both adults and young children.
Child Development News — ScienceDaily

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Linguistic study finds ‘the I’s have it’ when it comes to education rates

“I learn,” “you learn,” “she learns,” “they learn,” yet, according to a surprising new linguistic study, in countries where the dominant language allows personal pronouns such as ‘I’ to be omitted, learning suffers.
Child Development News — ScienceDaily

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Experimental treatment helps 2 out of 3 peanut allergy sufferers, study finds


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Children’s sleep not significantly affected by screen time, new study finds

As young people spend an increasing amount of time on electronic devices, the effects of these digital activities has become a prevalent concern among parents, caregivers, and policy-makers. Research indicating that between 50 percent to 90 percent of school-age children might not be getting enough sleep has prompted calls that technology use may be to blame. However, new research has shown that screen time has very little practical effect on children’s sleep.
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Obesity, low BMI linked to reduced lifespan, study reveals

Excessively high or low body mass index measurements have been linked to an increased risk of dying from nearly every major cause except transport accidents, new research says.


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Blood donations after mass shootings might be unnecessary, study says

As hundreds lined up to donate blood in the aftermath of the mass shooting at a Pittsburgh synagogue, a new study said that calls for blood donations after such mass-casualty events are not always necessary and may not be the best immediate response to such tragedies.


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Five out of five? Study reveals psychological influences in online reviews

A new study reveals how psychological factors affect the ratings people provide and how they describe their experiences when posting online reviews. Researchers found the length of time between product or service consumption and posting affects the review given.
Consumer Behavior News — ScienceDaily

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Wealth of world’s billionaires grew 20% last year, study reveals

China's ultra-wealthy are driving the trend, adding two new billionaires per week last year, and growing at a rate almost double that of the Americas and Europe.
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$500 Billion: Study Finds Parents Spend More on Adult Children than Retirement

Recent study insights reveal a telling tale of the extent of a parent’s love — and maybe even negligence — when it comes to their adult children. According to research, retirement security has taken a backseat for parents who are putting their children’s financial well-being ahead of their own future financial security, and they’re halting their golden-year plans just to make sure their offspring are thriving.

According to the study, “The Financial Journey of Modern Parenting: Joy, Complexity and Sacrifice” which was conducted by Merrill Lynch in partnership with Age Wave, parents today spend $ 500 billion annually on their adult children — ages 18-34 — double the amount they contribute each year to their retirement accounts.

More than 2,500 American parents were surveyed for the study which marks the third in a multi-year research series from Merrill Lynch and Age Wave, a company that studies maturing consumers.

“In this new era of delayed financial independence of young people, financial planning is no longer a solo or coupled activity,” Ken Dychtwald, Ph.D., CEO, and founder of Age Wave said in a news release. “It’s become an ongoing family project with longer and different social, housing and economic interdependencies than we’ve seen before.”

80% of parents say they would be willing to make a major financial sacrifice for adult children, including dipping into their savings or cutting back their lifestyles. 25% would take on debt or pull money from retirement accounts. The research also found 31% of early adults ages 18-34 live with their parents, but even if the child is out of the house, parents are chipping in on school costs, health insurance, rent, and car expenses. 59% expect to help pay for their children’s weddings, 26% expect to contribute to their children’s first homes, and one-third plan to contribute to their grandchildren’s college costs.

Despite the financial sacrifices, 93% of respondents said being a parent was the most rewarding aspect of their lives and 94% said raising their children — and the costs that come with doing so — has been worth “every penny.”

“When emotions and money become intertwined, parents risk making financial decisions that can compromise their — and their children’s — financial futures,” Lisa Margeson, head of retirement client experience and communications at Bank of America Merrill Lynch, said in the release. “Parents can navigate this difficult balance by setting clear boundaries about their level of support, fostering financial independence in adult children, and reconciling spending on children with long-term savings goals to avoid jeopardizing their own financial security.”

 

 

The post $ 500 Billion: Study Finds Parents Spend More on Adult Children than Retirement appeared first on Black Enterprise.

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Children as young as seven suffer effects of discrimination, study shows

Children are sensitive to and suffer the impacts of discrimination as young as seven years old, new research finds. Previous studies have shown children can identify racism at that age, but the study is the first to study the impacts on children under 10 years old. The study also suggests that a strong sense of ethnic-racial identity is a significant buffer against these negative effects.
Child Development News — ScienceDaily

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Study explores infant body position and learning

A developmental psychologist has completed a study that is the first to measure how often infants spend time in different body positions over the first year of life. The study aims to understand how the physical context of infants’ everyday experiences – in particular, how much time they spend in different body positions – changes over the course of the first year and how these changes are predicted by infants’ developing motor skills.
Infant and Preschool Learning News — ScienceDaily

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Not exercising worse for your health than smoking, diabetes and heart disease, study reveals

We’ve all heard exercise helps you live longer. But a new study goes one step further, finding that a sedentary lifestyle is worse for your health than smoking, diabetes and heart disease.


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New study says not exercising is pretty much the worst thing you can possibly do

exercise health

It’s no secret that there are a lot of things that can potentially impact your overall health. What food you eat, what habits you adopt or drop, and even how much sleep you get can have serious impacts on your wellbeing, but a new study by cardiologists reveals that of all the things you can do that might negatively impact your health, a sedentary lifestyle is the most deadly.

The research, which was published in JAMA Network Open, surveyed a whopping 122,007 patients between early 1991 and late 2014. The doctors recorded fitness levels of the individuals and then followed up to track mortality rates. The numbers were, as one of the authors of the paper put it, “extremely surprising.”

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New study says not exercising is pretty much the worst thing you can possibly do originally appeared on BGR.com on Fri, 19 Oct 2018 at 21:03:24 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.


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States With Legal Marijuana Have a Higher Rate of Car Accidents, Study Says

As more U.S. states legalize marijuana, a debate is growing around whether greater availability of cannabis products is causing an increase in auto accidents. A report Thursday from a highway-safety research group supports the camp that believe the two are linked.

The report, issued by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, said that car accidents reported to police in three states that had legalized marijuana sales–Colorado, Washington, and Oregon–saw 5.2% more accidents than did their neighboring states.

A second study by the group estimated that states that had legalized cannabis saw 6% more insurance collision claims than other states.

In recent years, a number of studies have look at whether legal cannabis is linked to traffic accidents, often reaching different conclusions. Last year, a study in the American Journal of Public Health looked at traffic fatalities in Colorado and Washington to find that there was “no significant association” between pot legalization and higher fatalities.

A study published in JAMA Internal Medicine in April, however, recorded an increase in car crashes over the past quarter century on April 20, a day when cannabis enthusiasts celebrate the drug. A 2015 study by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration “did not show a significant increase in levels of crash risk” with pot use when adjusted for demographics like age and gender.

Separately, the National Transportation Safety Board announced Wednesday its ruling on a bus crash that killed 13 people in Texas last March. The driver of a pick-up truck that collided with the bus was under the influence of marijuana and a prescription sedative, the NTSB said.

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$500 Billion: Study Finds Parents Spend More on Adult Children than Retirement

Recent study insights reveal a telling tale of the extent of a parent’s love — and maybe even negligence — when it comes to their adult children. According to research, retirement security has taken a backseat for parents who are putting their children’s financial well-being ahead of their own future financial security, and they’re halting their golden-year plans just to make sure their offspring are thriving.

According to the study, “The Financial Journey of Modern Parenting: Joy, Complexity and Sacrifice” which was conducted by Merrill Lynch in partnership with Age Wave, parents today spend $ 500 billion annually on their adult children — ages 18-34 — double the amount they contribute each year to their retirement accounts.

More than 2,500 American parents were surveyed for the study which marks the third in a multi-year research series from Merrill Lynch and Age Wave, a company that studies maturing consumers.

“In this new era of delayed financial independence of young people, financial planning is no longer a solo or coupled activity,” Ken Dychtwald, Ph.D., CEO, and founder of Age Wave said in a news release. “It’s become an ongoing family project with longer and different social, housing and economic interdependencies than we’ve seen before.”

80% of parents say they would be willing to make a major financial sacrifice for adult children, including dipping into their savings or cutting back their lifestyles. 25% would take on debt or pull money from retirement accounts. The research also found 31% of early adults ages 18-34 live with their parents, but even if the child is out of the house, parents are chipping in on school costs, health insurance, rent, and car expenses. 59% expect to help pay for their children’s weddings, 26% expect to contribute to their children’s first homes, and one-third plan to contribute to their grandchildren’s college costs.

Despite the financial sacrifices, 93% of respondents said being a parent was the most rewarding aspect of their lives and 94% said raising their children — and the costs that come with doing so — has been worth “every penny.”

“When emotions and money become intertwined, parents risk making financial decisions that can compromise their — and their children’s — financial futures,” Lisa Margeson, head of retirement client experience and communications at Bank of America Merrill Lynch, said in the release. “Parents can navigate this difficult balance by setting clear boundaries about their level of support, fostering financial independence in adult children, and reconciling spending on children with long-term savings goals to avoid jeopardizing their own financial security.”

 

 

The post $ 500 Billion: Study Finds Parents Spend More on Adult Children than Retirement appeared first on Black Enterprise.

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Hidden Drugs And Danger Lurk In Over-The-Counter Supplements, Study Finds

Everyone has seen the ads or the products on the shelves.

A dietary supplement that promises to make consumers skinny, without dieting or exercise. Or the one that will bulk them up and turn them into the envy of other weightlifters at the gym. Not to mention the one to make them perform better in the bedroom.

Their labels say they are safe and all-natural. But are they?

Many of these products contain unapproved and unregulated pharmaceutically active ingredients, according to a study published Friday in JAMA Network Open. The authors wrote that the substances represent “a serious public health concern.”

Researchers from the California Department of Public Health found that, from 2007 to 2016, 776 products marketed as dietary supplements contained hidden active ingredients that are unsafe or unstudied. Among them, dapoxetine, an antidepressant that is not approved in the United States; and sibutramine, which was included in some weight-loss supplements but was banned from the U.S. market in 2010 because of cardiovascular risks.

“It’s mind-boggling to imagine what’s happening here,” said Dr. Pieter Cohen, an associate professor of medicine at the Cambridge Health Alliance in Massachusetts. Cohen wasn’t involved in the study but wrote a commentary published alongside the research.

The California researchers based their findings on an analysis of a Food and Drug Administration database that identifies “tainted” supplements. “The study lays a foundation for ongoing enforcement work in this area, by the FDA and other partner agencies, to curb the illegal manufacture, importation, distribution, and sales of adulterated dietary supplements,” CDPH spokesman Corey Egel said in an email.

Being tainted or adulterated means the product contains active ingredients not listed on the label that fly under the FDA’s radar.

Dietary supplements aren’t classified by the FDA as drugs. They are instead considered foods. They include vitamins, minerals and botanicals, among other things. They are not intended to treat or prevent disease and are not subject to premarket safety and efficacy testing that drugs undergo.

The FDA database tracked problems that emerged during “post-market surveillance” — for instance, adverse events reports and consumer complaints — when bottles were already in consumers’ medicine cabinets. These issues generally draw FDA warning letters and agency requests for voluntary recalls by the manufacturer.

With an estimated 50 percent of Americans consuming some type of supplement, researchers note that the $ 35 billion industry is a big business.

But Duffy MacKay, senior vice president for scientific and regulatory affairs at the supplement industry’s Council for Responsible Nutrition, noted that with between 50,000 and 80,000 supplement labels on the market, 776 tainted products is serious but not widespread.

Of the adulterated products, nearly 46 percent were for sexual performance, 41 percent were for weight loss and 12 percent were for building muscle. Ingredients like sildenafil, the active drug in Viagra, and ephedrine, a stimulant banned from diet pills since 2004, were found in supplements. Anabolic steroids, or ingredients like them, were in 73 of the muscle-building supplements.

Nearly a fifth of these supplements contained more than one unapproved ingredient.

“Adulterated dietary supplements have the potential to cause adverse health effects both on their own and also in combination with other medications an individual may be taking,” the authors wrote.

Cohen agreed, noting that a patient with heart disease might be told to steer clear of prescription erectile dysfunction meds because they could interact with other prescription medications and dangerously lower the consumer’s blood pressure.

Instead, that patient turns to over-the-counter supplements that are marketed as all-natural, thinking this product will not pose the risks he was warned about. “And that’s very worrisome,” said Cohen.

The study authors wrote that these adulterated dietary supplements “are consumed under the presumption of safety and have the potential to cause dangerous consequences in cases of misuse or overdose.”

Cohen suggested looking for supplements with a single ingredient, because they probably will have a lower likelihood of containing secret, harmful ingredients. And never trust a supplement that definitively says it can improve your health.

That advice was echoed by MacKay, from the supplement industry’s trade group, who said outrageous claims about weight loss or body building are red flags.

These products are sold online or by shady retailers and have ridiculous names like “Ball Refill” or “Weekend Prince,” he said.

“There is such a difference between legitimate products and these products,” he added, noting that these “very extreme products” are marketed to “a consumer base that may be OK with this kind of illegal stuff.” That could include, he said, consumers who are “gym rats” and people who want Viagra without a prescription.

But earlier research conducted by Cohen and cited in this study offered a different lens through which to consider the numbers. It pointed to shortcomings in the post-marketing surveillance system, especially the inability of physicians and consumers to identify an adulterated product as the cause of a health problem or to know that such things should be reported to the FDA.

“In fact,” the researchers wrote, “poison control centers received over 1,000 more reports of adverse events associated with dietary supplements use than the FDA did over a 3-year-period.”

There’s little the FDA can or will do once a bad actor is identified. Supplement recalls aren’t like food recalls, Cohen said. With supplements, the FDA can only notify a company that their products have unapproved ingredients. It’s up to the company to conduct a voluntary recall.

“The recall process itself has completely broken down as far as I can tell,” Cohen said.

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With the Flu Season Underway, New Study Shows Vaccine Benefits for Pregnant Women

The 2018­-2019 flu season is here, and Kaiser Permanente is once again urging its employees and members to get vaccinated. While the effectiveness of the flu vaccine varies from year to year, the message from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has remained the same: to prevent flu, the best thing you can do is get a flu shot every year.

Flu vaccine is especially important for people at higher risk of developing severe flu, including pregnant women, young children, health care workers, the elderly, and people with chronic conditions such as diabetes, asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. A new CDC-led study, published on October 11 in Clinical Infectious Diseases, found that for pregnant women in particular, getting a flu shot reduced their risk of being hospitalized for flu-related reasons by an average of 40 percent.

Allison Naleway, PhD

Allison Naleway, PhD

The study was a partnership among CDC and other public health agencies and health care systems in Australia, Canada, Israel and the United States. Allison Naleway, PhD, an epidemiologist and vaccine researcher at the Kaiser Permanente Center for Health Research, is a study co-author.

“Expecting mothers face a number of risks to their health and the health of their baby during pregnancy, and getting the flu is one of them,” Naleway explained. “This study’s findings underscore the fact that there is a simple, yet impactful way to reduce the possibility of complications from flu during pregnancy: get a flu shot.”

Naleway is a site principal investigator for the Vaccine Safety Datalink, a national project funded by the CDC that links automated medical records data from several integrated health care delivery organizations to monitor vaccine safety. As a scientist on the front lines of vaccine research and surveillance, she often fields questions about the flu vaccine. Below, Naleway answers some of the most common questions she hears.

Why is the flu vaccine important?

Many people think of the flu as an inconvenience that causes a few days of misery at its worst, but the truth is that influenza can kill. Every year, hundreds of thousands of people end up in the hospital from the flu, and thousands of people die from flu-related causes. The flu vaccine isn’t perfect, but it’s our best defense. I encourage people to learn all they can about the flu vaccine, and the CDC’s “Key Facts About Season Flu Vaccine” is a great place to start.

Are there people who shouldn’t get the vaccine?

Many formulations of the flu vaccine are grown in chicken eggs, so people with egg allergies should talk to their health care provider before deciding whether to be vaccinated. Also, people who have had severe reactions to the flu vaccine in the past should talk to their health care provider before they decide whether to be vaccinated again. That said, severe reactions to the vaccine are very rare. Perhaps one in a million people vaccinated might have an allergic reaction or develop a rare paralytic illness. More common reactions include redness at the injection site, soreness, or a slight fever — mild symptoms that are outweighed by the vaccine’s benefits.

Is there a chance that I will still get the flu even if I do get the vaccine?

The flu vaccine is reformulated every year, so its effectiveness varies from year to year. It depends on how well the vaccine is matched to the particular viruses that are causing the flu. Scientists usually do a pretty good job of predicting which flu viruses are going to move from the Southern hemisphere into the Northern hemisphere, but sometimes they miss the mark. That’s what happened in the spring of 2009, when H1N1 spread up through Mexico into the United States. Experts didn’t see that coming, so we already had a large wave of illness before we had a vaccine to prevent it.

If the vaccine isn’t always effective, why should I get it?

The vaccine has been studied extensively and it’s very safe, so there’s very little downside to getting it. The flu can be quite serious and can cause severe symptoms including cough, sore throat, high fever, body aches, chills, fatigue and headaches. Again, while most people recover after a few days, many people end up in the hospital, and there are still thousands of people who die each year from complications of the flu.

Can the flu vaccine cause the flu?

Let me say emphatically that the flu vaccine does not cause the flu. The injectable vaccine contains a killed virus, so there’s no chance that it can give you the flu. We usually give the flu shot in September or October when a lot of other viruses are circulating, so when someone gets sick after getting the flu vaccine, it’s just a coincidence that they caught some other bug about the same time they were vaccinated.

Do you get the flu vaccine?

Yes! I get the vaccine every year — and so does my family.

 

The post With the Flu Season Underway, New Study Shows Vaccine Benefits for Pregnant Women appeared first on Kaiser Permanente.

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Jesus Can Lower Your Blood Pressure, Study Finds

Practicing religion was the secret ingredient, added to lifestyle changes, that helped a group of Black people reduce their high blood pressure, according to a new study published Tuesday in the scientific journal Circulation: Cardiovascular Quality and Outcomes.

Researchers used volunteers who suffer from high blood pressure and also attend church to see how certain religious practices would affect their hypertension. Black folks, already by far the most religious group in America, have been disproportionately diagnosed with hypertension.

“Our findings prove that people with uncontrolled hypertension can, indeed, better manage their blood pressure through programs administered in places of worship,” said Dr. Gbenga Ogedegbe, the lead author of the study.

The study was based on data collected from 2010 to 2014, from 373 Black participants with hypertension who attend church in New York City.

Researchers divided the participants into two groups,m with each receiving health education. Just one of the groups also received religious intervention, which included prayer, scripture reading and faith-based discussion related to health.

After six months, those in the religious intervention group reduced their systolic blood pressure by 5.8 mm Hg (millimeters of mercury).

Blood pressure readings consist of two parts: systolic and diastolic. Systolic is the pressure created when the heart beats and diastolic is the pressure when it’s resting, according to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The CDC defines a healthy blood pressure reading as less than 120/80 mm Hg, with the first number systolic and the second diastolic.

African-Americans suffer hypertension at the highest rate in the world, according to the American Heart Association. More than 40 percent of non-Hispanic African-American men and women have high blood pressure. For African-Americans, high blood pressure also develops earlier in life and is usually more severe.

Ogedegbe, who teaches at New York University School of Medicine, urged clergy and church leaders to pay attention to this study.

“Vulnerable populations often have lower access to primary care. We need to reduce racial disparities in hypertension-related outcomes between Blacks and whites,” he added.

 

Life & Style – Black America Web

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Global warming could literally drive you crazy, new study reveals

Climate change will literally drive you crazy.

Rising temperatures and increased precipitation have been linked with worsening mental health, according to a new study.

Scientists compared a decade’s worth of weather data with info from nearly two million randomly sampled U.S. residents during that…

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New Study Finds Health Care Costs Are Rising Almost Twice as Fast as Wages

If you’ve noticed an increasingly bigger chunk is coming out of your paycheck for medical premiums and deductibles, you’re not alone, according to a newly released survey.

In 2018, the cost of premiums has outpaced raises and inflation, the Kaiser Family Foundation’s Employer Health Benefits Survey found.

The 20th annual survey looked at cost trends for the 152 million Americans who are covered by health insurance — almost half of the population.

Together, employers and employees now spend $ 19,616 annually on coverage per family, while single coverage costs $ 6,896, according to the foundation.

From 2006 to 2012, premiums rose 37%, while salaries increased only 18%.

Who’s Affected Most by Rising Health Care Costs?

“Rising health care costs absolutely remain a burden for employers, but they’re a bigger problem for workers as their cost sharing has been rising really much faster than their wages have been rising in recent years,” said Drew Altman, president and CEO of the Kaiser Family Foundation.

Average family premiums increased 5% in the past year, while singles paid 3% more. Meanwhile, wages outpaced inflation by just 0.1%, according to the report.

In general, employees at smaller companies shoulder a larger percentage of premiums and deductibles than their counterparts at bigger firms, Altman said. Average deductibles were $ 2,132 at small firms versus $ 1,355 at large employers (200 employees or more).

The cost paid for deductibles rose 212% over the past decade — eight times the growth of wages, he said.

On the upside for smaller firms, 27% of employees’ entire premium costs are employer-paid, versus 6% of employees at large companies, according to the report.

How Much Are We Paying for Health Care Each Year?

The average premium amount contributed by all workers is $ 1,186 for a single person and $ 5,547 for a family. Although that’s about the same as last year, the average amount for family coverage has increased 21% since 2013 and 65% since 2008, Kaiser found.

Most workers also are responsible for copayments when they go to a doctor’s appointment. The average is $ 25 for primary care and $ 40 for specialists, Kaiser calculated. Many workers also pay coinsurance of 18% of the covered amount of each visit, whether to a primary-care doctor or a specialist. (That was about the same as in 2017.)

Kaiser officials said employees should read their companies’ websites carefully to determine the most cost-effective option, although they acknowledge that the choices may not be plentiful.

“When you can, you should shop around,” Altman said.

Susan Jacobson is an editor for The Penny Hoarder. She also writes about health and wellness.

The Penny Hoarder Promise: We provide accurate, reliable information. Here’s why you can trust us and how we make money.

This was originally published on The Penny Hoarder, which helps millions of readers worldwide earn and save money by sharing unique job opportunities, personal stories, freebies and more. The Inc. 5000 ranked The Penny Hoarder as the fastest-growing private media company in the U.S. in 2017.


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Football Concussion Rates Plummet After One Simple Rule Change, Study Shows

Concussions plunged in Ivy League football after the kickoff line was moved to thwart what might be the game’s most dangerous play, according to a study published Monday.

The aim of the 5-yard move was to have more kickoffs land in the end zone and reduce returns. That play is one of the only times “where players on both teams have the space to get up to full speed” rushing at each other and potentially risking a head-on tackle, said University of Pennsylvania researcher Douglas Wiebe, the lead author.

The 2016 change came at the recommendation of league coaches after data from the previous year showed kickoffs accounted for 6 percent of all plays but 21 percent of concussions. With NCAA approval, they moved the kickoff line from the 35-yard line to the 40. The touchback line was also moved, from the 25-yard line to the 20.

The NCAA approved the changes on an experimental basis for the eight private universities in the Ivy League. Other NCAA teams have kickoffs at the 35.

The researchers compared the two seasons since the change with the previous three years. They found the average concussion rate per 1,000 kickoffs plummeted from almost 11 to just 2.

Touchbacks increased to nearly 50 percent from almost 18 percent during the previous three years.

Concussion rates for other types of play were lower than those for kickoffs throughout the study years and only declined slightly after the rule change.

The research appears in the Journal of the American Medical Association. It was paid for by the Ivy League and Big Ten.

“It’s very promising that we’re able to see an effect like that,” said Zachary Kerr, a researcher in the University of North Carolina’s exercise and sport science department. Kerr, who was not involved in the study, said the NCAA should take the results seriously as it considers policy changes to reduce injuries.

While the Ivy League has been especially aggressive about modifying its playing and practice rules, all levels of football — from Pee Wee to professional — have taken steps to decrease the frequency of kickoff returns. The risks of the play, which creates high speed crashes, are common knowledge.

Dartmouth College Coach Buddy Teevens eliminated players tackling each other at most of his team’s practices — even before the Ivy League passed a league-wide rule about it. He also invented a robotic dummy that is used in tackling drills.

Teevens said the decision to push up the kickoff line was made collaboratively among the Ivy League’s coaches.

“Our thing for our game at our level has been productive,” he said. “I’m happy to see the results and share them with the country and certainly the NCAA and maybe other people follow suit.”

The NCAA implemented a new rule this season at all levels of college football that allows players to call for a fair catch on kickoffs that come down short of the end zone but inside the 25-yard line. A fair catch means the kick cannot be advanced and a ball carrier is not tackled. The result of the play is the equivalent of a touchback, where the ball is placed at the 25. The Ivy League uses the fair catch rule, along with kicking off from the 40.

Boston University concussion expert Dr. Robert Cantu, who was not involved in the research, considers the return “the most dangerous play in football.” He noted that after data showed NFL concussions overall increased slightly last season, the league’s rules committee considered eliminating the kickoff return, but decided not to.

“The Ivy League is really leading the charge into bringing about rule changes to make football safer,” Cantu said.

In 2011, the NFL moved the kickoff line to the 35-yard line from the 30, but a published analysis concluded that overall kickoff play injuries dropped but not head injuries.

While the Ivy League’s rule was an experiment, the study results likely will solidify it as formal policy, Wiebe said.

“It’s a real public health success story,” he said.

___

AP College Football Writer Ralph D. Russo contributed to this report.

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‘Last Jedi’ hate was ‘weaponized’ by Russia, says study

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The Brexit vote. The 2016 U.S. presidential election. And … the online reaction to The Last Jedi. 

What do all these events have in common? All were allegedly skewed by Russian trolls. 

The Last Jedi accusation comes in a new paper by Morton Bay, a Research Fellow at the University of Southern California (George Lucas’ alma mater). Bay analyzed all tweets sent directly to Last Jedi director Rian Johnson over a seven month period after the movie’s release. 

His conclusion? More than 50 percent were “bots, trolls/sock puppets or political activists using the debate to propagate messages supporting extreme right-wing causes and the discrimination of gender, race or sexuality,” Bay writes. “A number of these users appear to be Russian trolls.”  Read more…

More about Russia, Star Wars, Rian Johnson, The Last Jedi, and Internet Research Agency


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